Author: Singapore's Budget Babe

Saving Money and Getting Loans from Credit Co-operatives (Are they better than banks?)

What is a credit co-operative? Unless you’re in one, most Singaporeans do not know of them nor the important role they play in society. More importantly, you may not be aware that there are plenty of benefits you can get from being a member of a credit co-op. Co-ops are basically regulated social enterprises. They are organised on a voluntary basis, democratically controlled and member-owned, to achieve the common social or economic aim that benefits their members and/or society at large. In fact, co-ops are founded on values of self-help, mutual assistance, equality, care for community and co-operation. As...

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IPO Analysis: Is Astrea IV Private Equity Class A-1 bond worth a BUY?

Astrea IV Class A-1 bonds are the talk of the town right now, and I’ve received so many DMs about this so I’m finally sitting down to evaluate and write this. Details: – The bond is launched by Astrea IV Pte. Ltd, which is an indirect subsidiary of Temasek – 4.35% interest rate offered – IPO applications close at 12 noon on 12 June 2018 – You can apply through ATM or online banking via DBS, POSB, OCBC or UOB – Minimum subscription amount: S$2,000 – You CANNOT use your CPF or SRS funds to apply for this bond....

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Has Obike taken your $49 deposit without informing you?

If you’ve ever used Obike before, open your app and check NOW. Because the chances are, your $49 deposit is probably gone. There’s a high probability that Obike has sneakily, without your consent, taken your $49 deposit to purchase their “Super VIP plan” for 1095 days. According to a reader of mine, X, who tipped me off about this, this happened to her earlier this year in April…and she only discovered it today, two months later. Mind you, there was no notification to inform her that her deposit was gone. A quick glance at Facebook and Reddit shows that...

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Save money when transferring abroad – Review of TransferWise

Did you know about these hidden costs in money transfers?  75% of Singaporeans don’t understand the true cost of sending money overseas – which includes both upfront fees and an exchange rate markup. If you’ve ever transferred money abroad, you’d be familiar with how the money that’s received on the other end is usually much lesser than you thought it’ll be. I first experienced this when I had to make USD transfers for my crypto transactions and trades last year. There were so many hidden costs, to which I mostly attribute to: (i)            a higher exchange rate charged by...

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Should I Buy Maternity Insurance When I’m Pregnant?

The latest and most comprehensive list of maternity insurance plans offered in Singapore (2018 edition). I compared between the 7 plans that I considered during my pregnancy term and spoke to 4 insurance agents to get the full quotes illustrated below. As most of you guys know, I’ve always been an advocate of buying insurance (after all, it is named as a core tenet under my Guide to Financial Independence tab here), so when I got pregnant, one of the first things I naturally thought about was whether I needed to get maternity insurance. Photo Credit What Is Maternity...

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Too Good To Be True? Another Unregulated Investment Promoted By Instagram Influencer Joycelyn Quek

Just last month, I uncovered this investment that was making its rounds on Instagram, after being promoted by local social media influencer Rachell Tan (@pxdkitty) and even her friend Ang Chiew Ting (@bongqiuqiu) who had invested into it, while sharing why I found it so questionable. Well, guess what? Here’s another one again. And while the durian investments saga previously only required a minimum of $1k+ to get started, this particular one is asking for a minimum of USD 10k! Let me ask you again, why would you put so much of your hard-earned money with someone on Instagram whom...

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Review of Your Financial GPS – Your handy digital financial advisor by DBS

If you wish to achieve financial independence, you need to plan and consistently ensure you’re on track to meeting your goals. For anyone looking for a framework, I’ve repeatedly emphasized that the route involves: Cutting your expenses Setting up your emergency fund Growing your savings Protecting your assets Invest to further grow your capital and build passive income You’ll find this bookmarked under the GUIDE tab on this blog. To promote this message and culture of planning for financial independence (because we all know that inflation and the high cost of living in...

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What To Do In Your First Trimester

So…if you haven’t already seen the news on my Instagram or on my Dayre, I’m pregnant with my first child! :D My first trimester was pretty tough because I suffered am still having really bad nausea and acid reflux, and it felt like time couldn’t pass any quicker. It was tough keeping the baby a secret from my colleagues at work, and even speaking at events – SGX and a SUSS cryptocurrency panel discussion – while trying to hide my discomfort! I honestly couldn’t wait to enter my second trimester after reading about how the morning sickness tends to go...

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SAFE DRIVERS ONLY – You can now pay less for your car insurance!

If you’re a safe driver looking to try and reduce your insurance premiums, I might have found just the answer for you. I recently came across Vouch when a friend of mine shared about it on Facebook. Vouch, which is essentially a local digital car insurance platform partnering with major motor insurers like NTUC Income, Sompo and Tokio Marine. The exciting news is that they’ve just launched Singapore’s first No-Claims Rebate (NCR) for motor insurance last month! You guys know how I’m like when I see a good deal – I go digging into whether it truly is as good as it...

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What stock can I invest in that is low risk and high returns?

BB, what stock can I invest in that is low risk and high returns? That’s one of the most common questions I get from readers and probably one of the most difficult to answer. Everyone has a different interpretation of “low risk” and “high returns”, but in my case, the answer to the above question almost always comprise of value stock i.e. stocks that trade at a discount to what they’re really worth. Sometimes this comes in the form of properties. Last month, I shared on my Patreon about a property stock which I found that was trading at...

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Why are so many mummy influencers peddling slimming pills and consumables from China?

Does anyone still remember Slim10? The notorious dieting pill, produced by a manufacturer in China, led to various cases of thyroid problems, liver failure and even deaths throughout Asia among people who had consumed it. 2 harmful substances (fenfluramine and nicotinamide) were later detected, as well as traces of 2 other banned substances (thyroxine and triiodothyronine); all of which were not listed in the ingredients list submitted to HSA. Now, I want you to take a close look at what happened to the distributors who were responsible for selling the pills: Screenshot from MustShareNews Now, you would think Singaporeans...

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Get cashback or miles on your income tax payments? Why not!

Wow, I wasn’t expecting so many of you to appreciate my previous post on reducing your income tax – thanks for the support! Remember to maximise your tax reliefs and deductions every year, so you’ll end up saving up to thousands of dollars with just a few minutes of work! To all the new readers who just visited this space because you got directed here from Ho Ching or IRAS, hello! Anyway, as a continuation to the earlier post, now that we’ve explored the various ways to reduce our income taxes, the next step to look at would be...

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Did Mothership just copy my article without proper source credits or am I wrong?

Is this Mothership article about an influencer promoting durian investments an attempt at deliberate plagiarism or just an ignorant mistake? More specifically, let’s talk about whether large editorial publishing houses have the right to take a story that first broke in a small-time blogger’s website without proper crediting where it is due. My first thought when I read it: HEY this looks suspiciously like MY article! *looks around for proper source crediting to SG Budget Babe. Finds none.* Let’s start from the very beginning. On 19 April 2018, I first wrote about local lifestyle influencer @pxdkitty activities in promoting...

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Are Instagram Influencers Peddling Dubious Investments?

(These investment schemes were alerted to me by some of my readers, who requested for this blog post to be written for greater awareness and that hopefully, this reaches and helps to inform more people.) Is it legal, or ethical, for influencers to peddle and push out investment schemes in Singapore? I’ve been seeing Instagram influencers pushing out investment opportunities, promoting it to their followers and asking them to direct message them for more details. As a bystander, what more a blogger who writes about personal finance, this makes me extremely uncomfortable. Case #1: Forex Investment with capital guaranteed...

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How to reduce your income tax in Singapore (make use of these tax reliefs and deductions!)

Back when I was still in my first job, my annual income tax was only about $200. This was based on a yearly income of $30,000, of which I saved $20,000 – read about how I did it here. (Nope, no bonuses either.) I don’t mind paying taxes as I understand and appreciate the fact that the money is channeled for the government to help the lower-income groups, as well as pay for other public goods such as our roads, education, etc. But ever since I got headhunted to my second, and now third, job where I received a...

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